The continuous progress and innovation that surrounds egg freezing has led to immense change in the societal perspective of women who freeze their eggs, as well as the availability and popularity of egg freezing itself.
Prior to 2009 when the use of vitrification (a fast-freeze technology, whereas older slow-freeze methods would produce crystals inside the eggs ultimately damaging them) was introduced and proven to be a highly reliable method for freezing eggs, egg freezing was only utilized by women looking to preserve their fertility prior to undergoing cancer treatment. Then, it wasn’t until 2011 that the ASRM (the American Society for Reproductive Medicine) declared the use of vitrification no longer experimental for elective egg freezing, which catapulted egg freezing popularity and availability into the next generation.
Fast forward to 2017, and thousands of women, including celebrities and outspoken advocates, are electing to freeze their eggs (with the highly reliable method of vitrification) and feeling empowered to pause their biological clock and pursue family building when their life’s timetable—not necessarily their body’s timetable—dictates it’s time.
With the help of celebrities who have opened up about their egg freezing stories, more and more women are now aware of their options to preserve their fertility.
Age is the Primary Reason Women Choose Egg Freezing
Age is a leading factor in infertility; a woman’s eggs deteriorate in quantity and quality over time. However, with the technology and resources available to silence the constant ticking of the “biological clock,” women are now freer than ever to take their reproductive options into their own hands.
As the workforce continues to change and more and more women are pursuing advanced academic degrees, ultimately extending the age at which they may get married or start having children, egg freezing has become more commonly known and widely accepted.
Over the past several years, a few big names have become strong advocates for egg freezing and have used their position to raise awareness and share the benefits they have reaped from egg freezing.
A Leading Voice: Sarah Elizabeth Richards
Sarah Elizabeth Richards is a journalist who has contributed to the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time, Elle, and more and is the groundbreaking voice behind her book Motherhood, Rescheduled. Her book accounted for her own experience in egg freezing as well as the impact that egg freezing has had on other women. Since learning about egg freezing at 35 and doing multiple cycles of her own in 2011, Richards has continuously advocated for the life-altering effects that deciding to freeze your eggs can have on a woman. She describes the process as a “profound sense of relief,” leaving her feeling proud of herself for taking control of her future and her fertility. Motherhood, Rescheduled serves to educate women on what egg freezing really is as well as divert from the old stigma that egg freezing is an act of desperation rather than a wise, proactive decision. She recognizes society’s lack of familiarity with the process and the common tendency for OB/GYNs to neglect discussing egg freezing as an option for their patients. Richards felt that she was lucky enough to know to ask, and wants egg freezing to be more widely talked about among communities and between doctors and their patients. Her piece in the New York Times, “We Need to Talk about Our Eggs,” focuses on the need for widespread information so women can make educated decisions regarding their lives before it is too late.
A Back-Up Plan: Olivia Munn
In 2016, Olivia Munn came forward to tell fans on Anna Faris’ podcast Anna Faris is Unqualified that “years ago, [she] froze a bunch of eggs” and encourages others to do the same. She admits that the pressure is off as she can focus on her career and that the dating landscape has changed. Women are able to form relationships that aren’t coerced by the need to have children quickly and, by having a back-up plan, women may still have more children after a failed relationship despite her age.
Free and Fierce: Sofia Vergara
Sofia Vergara came to appreciate the dating freedom that egg freezing provided; with a boyfriend younger than her who aims to have children, she is able to comfortably explore her relationship without the pressure of time having an impact. “I just wanted to plan ahead,” Vergara, 40, told ABC News in regards to her decision to freeze. She explains that she doesn’t plan on having children now but, for her boyfriend, it leaves the option open.
Preparation is Key: Kim Kardashian
Kim Kardashian took the same stance years ago when she decided to freeze her eggs. “I think now I can just be proactive,” she said at the time when she shared during an episode of her hit TV show Keeping Up with the Kardashians, “I want to make sure when the time is right, I want to be prepared. I want to be safe.”
Education Comes First: Radell Peischler
As a former SGF patient who has been very active in sharing her experience with other women, Radell Peischler made it her goal to increase education and awareness about egg freezing. In 2014, 4 years after learning about the option to freeze her eggs, Radell went forward to complete a cycle and has been an advocate for women putting themselves first ever since. Read about Radell’s perspective on the process on our website.
Egg freezing allows women to alleviate the pressure of finding healthy and happy relationships, commit to their careers, and take control of their futures without fear of age having an impact on what they are capable of. Like a weight off your shoulders, as many celebrities shared, egg freezing offers the opportunity to put your mind at ease for when the time is right to have a baby.
For more information about Shady Grove Fertility’s Egg Freezing Program, including our new financial option with monthly payments as low as $195/month, call 1-877-411-9292 to speak with one of our New Patient Center Liaisons.